Jazz station turns into all talk

WBEZ in Chicago , one of America’s biggest jazz cities, is set to change format overnight from jazz to a 24 hour news and information format.

The station, which broadcasts to Chicago on 91.5FM have an audience share of around 8 per cent and is operated by National Public Radio. It is a similar situation around the United States with Connecticut Public Radio’s WNPR FM changing from classical music to talk last month, and other stations in New York, Boston and Washington making similar moves.

Torey Malatia, Station Manager for WBEZ said: What will not change is our commitment to provide and develop rich programming”. In a statement on the station website, they inform listeners fo the changes:

The following programming changes will go into effect on WBEZ 91.5 FM concurrent with the launch of our new service in early 2007:

***Our schedule will offer 24 hours of public affairs and cultural programming, seven days a week (including entertainment programs such as Sound Opinions, Prairie Home Companion, etc.)

***Chicago Public Radio-produced Comin? Home, Encanto Latino, Extensions, Jazz Programming, Passport, and Jazz with Dick Buckley will no longer be produced.

***Acquired programs such as Afropop Worldwide, Blues Before Sunrise, and Piano Jazz with Marian McPartland will no longer air.

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